Posts Tagged ‘profits’

Profits, Understanding Human Events, and Manufactured Housing

July 7th, 2018 No comments



When in the course of human events...”


Day by day, people make life-changing decisions. Those choices can be for good or ill.

A fact without context may have little discernible meaning. To properly understand the present, or any moment in time, one must understand what occurred previously. 

In the famous George Orwell’s dark novel, 1984, control of information – including historical – was part of how “Big Brother” could pivot his alliances between otherwise ‘competing’ factions.

Orwell used fiction to brilliantly shed light on the human condition. 


Profitable History 

History could be profitably oversimplified to the following notion.  

History is a series of events describing how this or that ambitious person or group tries to dominate, manipulate or oppress others. That domination in turn creates a desire for freedom among those being manipulated, disadvantaged or controlled. 

When in the course of human events…” are the first words in the Declaration of Independence. The founders were educated men who knew history, business, philosophy, science, and religion. 

America’s founding founders were the opposite of socialists.  They were fighting against economic, political, and legal oppression. They did so for moral, and religious reasons.



The report on this topic, along with others mentioned in the body of this article, are found under related resources, at the end of this column.


Not What It Seems

Because of competing interests, stories – narratives – are told that spin, twist or outright lie about some fact, person, history, or group.  

The brilliant G.K. Chesterton was spot on in saying, “What is wrong is that we don’t ask what is right.”

It was sheer genius when the venerable Fulton Sheen – with his keen insights into human nature – caused him to observe that people can be tempted to do what is right, just as we can be tempted into doing what’s wrong. 

It’s a stretch to say that a brighter future for America depends upon a wider acceptance of manufactured homes. But a broader understanding and embracing of manufactured homes would demonstrably yield more wealth for people of modest means, and all others too.  Is there evidence or proof for that claim?

Yes, and it’s been produced over the years by educated, third-party researchers. 

Greater personal net worth for the working and middle class would in turn make America as a whole a more prosperous, and freer people.  Wealth in all of its forms – properly understood – breeds more wealth.  Wealth isn’t a zero sum game, as some have been mislead into believing. 

We must not forget that manufactured homes – along with the mobile homes that were built before the federal manufactured housing standards began on June 15, 1976 – were a working-class option praised by American presidents. The subsidized housing system of the last 50 years is a demonstrable failure. It can never keep up with the demands, and never has. 

In contrast to subsidized housing, manufactured homes are uniquely positioned today to serve the needs of people on virtually all rungs of the economic ladder. 

But we must also embrace the reality that millionaires, the famous, and even some billionaires have owned a manufactured home they called their own home.  That fact often opens minds, and thus boosts manufactured housing’s acceptance, and appeal. 

Opening minds is at the heart of what must happen in America.  Opening minds must occur on every level of society, including that of the good news, which   includes how manufactured homes have and can support the American Dream. 


GreenLeafInsideLightBulbProfitsMastheadBlogManufacturedHousingIndustryMHProNewsThe American Dream – The Profitable Battle Over Housing, Freedom, and Understanding  

The American Dream was never about mere shelter, or “housing.”  

Rentals or subsidized housing wasn’t what the rebels of 1776 fought, bled, and died for during their era.  The very notion would have been widely rejected then, and rightly so.

Today, we should in stages remove subsidized housing from the government’s practices and then, it’s lexicon of failed socialized efforts. 

Private ownership of housing is to be preferred as a public policy.  Who says? Harvard, and several other third-party researchers.  

So, the American rebels wanted to be secure in their persons, properties, papers, and possessions.  They wanted no taxation or regulation without just representation.  They wanted a republic, not a democracy, dictatorship or monarchy.  

When one reads the Declaration of Independence in the context of history, it’s a brilliant document. Ditto the U.S. Constitution, and the Bill of Rights.



The founders of the U.S. made complex compromises. A black or Native American might understandably feel a level of pain over some concepts in those documents. But we must be mindful, as dark-skinned immigrant Dinesh D’Souza reminds us, that whites were indentured servants too. Servitude isn’t only a racial issue. Oppression in all of its forms plays a sad part in all of human history.   

The quest for freedom is part of that puzzling mosaic of history, which is best understood as the struggle of some seeking domination over others. That domination takes many forms.  That thirst for domination in turn sparks the desire for freedom.  Often, as we all know from experience, we don’t realize some good thing that what we have, until we’re losing or have lost it. 

So it’s a poisonous fallacy to say that the U.S. Constitution was purely racist. Because blacks owned other blacks – sad, but true – and white’s made chattel of other whites for long periods of time. Conquest is color blind, and so is the thirst for freedom. Freedom is won or lost in degrees, and over time. 

Race hustlers should be denounced as manipulative, just as certain billionaires seek to rig the system for their own benefit and enrichment today. Socialists may be sincere, but they are misguided.  The socialist system is failing before our eyes in Venezuela, in just a decade. It failed in Cuba. The Chinese Communists, and the Soviet Russians abandoned socialism too. 

Why should Americans buy into propaganda that’s so blatantly false? 

Then why are some billionaires peddling dressed up variations of socialism to Americans today? 

Because socialism requires big government.  Big government means power over people.  That kind of power is a path to taking the wealth of others, by misusing government.  Government is a devious way to obtaining money that ought to be sought by honest work. Here’s another historic tip. The Nazi’s weren’t right wingers.  They were “National Socialists” = Nazi. There are so many lies and half-truths being spun today by the manipulators that it’s disgraceful. That’s why ignorance of history, economics, morality, or politics is dangerous.



Celebrating Success

We celebrate honest success here, and are for the rights “endowed by our Creator” enshrined in the principles of Life, Liberty, and that Pursuit of Happiness;” which in the earlier draft of the Declaration read “Life, Liberty, and Property.”

Those who peddle:

  • Socialism,
  • Racial hatred of any kind,
  • Universal Basic Income,
  • Sexual divisions,
  • “Free” college,
  • “Free” health care,
  • Subsidized housing,
  • Higher taxes,
  • More regulations,

are arguably either ignorant, misguided, manipulative or some combination of those three.

People are never free who are entirely dependent upon others.  

The revolution of 1776 was controversial even in the 13 colonies.  Those colonies declared themselves to be a confederation of independent states. George Washington and the others had a price on their heads, and a bulls eye too.  Benedict Arnold wasn’t alone. America was divided, then and now.  Some fought for the British crown, just as some fight today for the monopolistic and socialistic. The reasons then and now are similar. Greed. Lust for power. The desire to control the lives of others.

Understanding the principles of human nature, and the principles of history are necessary for Americans to reclaim our national vision.  Affordable home ownership is part of that American Dream.



A man’s home is his castle,” wasn’t mere sentimentality. The right to own property – including one’s home – and to be secure in one’s person, property (think home), papers, possessions, and beliefs were at the core of the 1776 revolt. Note that the 10 Commandments protected private property, and the truth. 

The American revolution was also about no taxation or regulation without just representation. It was about establishing laws that protected rights, even the rights of minorities against the potential of mob rule from manipulated majorities.

We’ve got a Republic, at least on paper, not a democracy.  

But a new revolt, which could be peaceful, is arguably needed today. That revolution – and a counter-revolution – are already underway.

That revolution of the American Dream begins with understanding realities vs. popularized fictions, lies or half-truths.  

Zoning” and other forms of land-use control are among those structures that are potentially as oppressive as what the founders rebelled against in 1776.  Note that 200 year span between the revolution, and the dawn of the manufactured housing era?

Manipulations of the American system in turn caused affordable housing shortages in places throughout the nation. Who says? A growing body of researchers, that have been cited for years here on MHProNews, or on MHLivingNews. Why don’t those folks in Arlington, VA routinely cite those same third-party sources?  Why do they turn instead to their own, weaponized data and claims?


$2 Trillion Annually

Problematic zoning and land use, say university-level researchers, costs America an estimated $2 trillion dollars a year in lost GDP.

$2 trillion dollars a year is roughly equal to $6,000 per every many woman and child. 

Rephrased, for a household of 4 people, it would be like adding some $24,000 per year in earnings.

That’s life changing for tens of millions, and would be far more effective than the phony higher minimum wage, public assistance programs, or other enslaving handouts that some socialistic-minded wags advocate.  Those truly need have always been cared for in America. We didn’t need big brother government to care for people in need.

When Americans are kept from understanding and embracing manufactured homes – per the logic and reasoning that flows from third-party researchers from places like Harvard – it’s costly to all Americans.

But ignorance and rejection of the truth about manufactured housing is especially costly to those whose only home ownership chance may be a manufactured home. 



Wheat and Chaff 

There’s an absolute necessity to seek the truth, regardless of its source. That in turn requires a “wheat and chaff” approach that discerns what is real – from what is problematic. Often, common thoughts are nevertheless untrue. A great example is a manufactured home, which many misunderstand, because they believe the common prejudice, vs. the honest, demonstrable reality.  

We may disagree with this or that political party or organization on a range of issues.  But a group or person may still hold a position which is demonstrably wise, good, and true. Prosperity Now (formerly CFED) has done some fine research, but also hold some problematic socialist-tainted views. They are keenly involved in MHVille, and are an example of the need for a wheat and chaff approach. They are also an example of why engagement is a wise course of action. Critiques properly understood aren’t an attack.  Critiques are a call for intelligent debate, discussion, and mutual learning.

Former Clinton adviser and Democratic strategist Doug Schoen has said that the Democratic Party can’t be a party of redistribution of wealth. Smart.  

Schoen sees the hard left push in his party as embracing socialism, and he rejects it. Democrat Alan Dershowitz sees the harm being caused by weaponizing parts of the government in an attempt to illegitimately unseat a duly elected president.  

You or I may not trust the political, religious or economic perspective of some group or person.  But that doesn’t keep us from considering a specific truth that another may offer.  

So, for example. Much of what Democrats as a party are embracing today in the way of socialism and supposedly “free stuff” – which obviously someone must pay for – are demonstrably nonsense. They are false promises, designed to manipulatively attract, and trap millions of minds. 

But the Democrats were arguably smart to put up a policy position that calls for stronger controls over monopolistic forces in America. On that point, this Masthead writer agrees with them. That’s another example of separating the wheat from the chaff.

Candidates Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump agreed on this. The “System is Rigged.” That much is true. 

And that rigged system is keeping millions from being more free by having their right to choose a manufactured home limited or removed.

Yet, that right to choose a manufactured home is essentially codified in federal law, in the Manufactured Housing Improvement Act of 2000, found in the enhanced preemption clause. That’s how zoning and other land-use regulations, which are strangling opportunities for millions to own a manufactured home, can be defeated, just by applying existing federal law.

The reward for doing so is a society that researchers say would produce $2 trillion dollars more a year in GDP. That in turn would in time end the need for subsidized housing, and other well-indented – but nevertheless misguided – ‘entitlement programs.’ 

We editorially oppose socialists and monopolistic manipulators.  It is interesting to note that those billionaires often publicly claim to support leftist candidates. We oppose them, whether their headquarters are in Omaha or Silicon Valley, etc.

There are some billionaires who are no doubt just fine, so its not the rich that are being blindly opposed.  But rather, it’s those who have rigged the system against the rights of “We, the People.” It’s a matter of principle, based upon an understanding of economic, legal, political, and historical forces.

There are more than one strategic moats which threaten our Republic from within.  That’s why the fictional movie Network was as brilliant a look at reality as was George Orwell’s 1984. 



Manufactured Home “Choice”

Manufactured Home Choice” or the “Manufactured Home Option” must become a factually accurate, evidenced based battle cry that third-party researchers logic says could create trillions in more wealth and GDP productivity for the USA.  

That would yield thousands of new millionaires, and some new billionaires. They should embrace the long-term vision to make that manufactured home option part of the reality of the “American Dream. 

That’s the Profitable Manufactured Housing Revolution.

That can be done without creating a monopoly. 

If you’re among those who’ve followed our periodic series of reports on issues – past and present – that could make manufactured housing greater than ever, you aren’t alone.  If you’ve missed them, some are linked below, as references for greater insight on this essay.


Tim, Kevin, Joe, Keith, David, Ross, Mike, Sam…

MH professionals named Tim, Kevin, Joe, Keith, Ross, David, Ross, Mike, Sam, and a host of others are – per our sources – following those reports, articles, and commentary like this on MHProNews.  When they follow it, that’s a good reason for others in MHVille to do the same, isn’t it?  

They, per the evidence, may or may not agree with the goals behind what we publish. What is our goal?  To expand opportunities made possible by a broad use of manufactured homes, promoted in an honest, sustainable, and honorable fashion.  

As an example of those that Marty Lavin calls the big boys” – and how they react to what is published on MHProNews is this.

We are told by sources in and out of their Arlington based network that a gent named Tim is “obsessed” with what we publish. 


If this was a place online for the angry or mad, it would soon be devoid of readers.

But instead, third-party reports reveal a growing audience, which includes: 

  • International investors,
  • public officials,
  • advocates,
  • media,
  • researchers,
  • educated people across the left-right divide,

along with thousands of manufactured and factory-built home industry professionals.  

They come each day by the thousands to the Daily Business News and/or to other parts of MHProNews. 

Some who initially misunderstood – or even strongly opposed – our exposés like Smoking Gun 3 and other reports have-or-are becoming convinced by the evidence presented.

Facts in context matter. 

Some monopolistic minds sought to marginalize or kill-off, we’re told, this pro-industry, pro-growth Trade Media platform – along with our sister-site, – which also begs the question, “Why?” 

George Orwell, the founders, or other freedom-loving thinkers and doers throughout history hold the answer. 

Ignorance is Strength,” was a slogan “Big Brother” used in Orwell’s 1984. If someone can keep you ignorant of your rights or opportunities – in the problematic world-view of monopolistic or socialistic dominators – that allows them to profit or benefit.

The tragic irony is this.

There is arguably more profit without the monopolistic strategic Moat than with it. Is there evidence for that claim?

Sure.  Just look at MHVille when there were more independent producers, vs. the scarcity of independents today for proof.

There’s more wealth to be earned by making America and Manufactured Housing Greater than ever, than there is by robbing people of opportunities though pressures, ignorance, rigged systems or false promises. 

We have always celebrated honest success on MHProNews. 

We oppose on principle monopolistic or any other form of economic, moral, and political oppression as Un-American. 

At the end of the day, it’s the truth that sets people free. Who says?  How about a wise Jewish rebel who preached a gospel that even centuries later motivated the 1776 founders who put their lives, fortunes, and sacred honor on the line, when they began with those timeless words…

When in the course of human events…”


Knowledge, not ignorance, is the beginning of freedom.  


Education, not spin or hype, are a fundamental part of the Manufactured Housing Revolution.



Tony took the photo at the right.

It’s all about the education of our fellows that can make this manufactured home industry an ever-more vital part of the American Dream of homeownership.

The proof is there for those who are willing to explore the evidence. Can we get an “Amen?” ##  (News, historic, commentary, analysis.)

(Third party images, content are provided under fair use guidelines.)

Related Reports are below…

By L. A. “Tony” Kovach, publisher, consultant, history buff, and manufactured housing industry expert.

Connect on LinkedIn.  For 2x weekly emailed headline news, click here.




Related Reports:

Manufactured Home Shipments, State by State Breakdown, May 2018 Official HUD Data

Two Great Laws Already on the Books NOW,  Can Unlock Billion$ Annually for Manufactured Housing Industry Businesse$, Investor$


Time Travelers, and the Future of American Homes


Deadwood, the Manufactured Housing Revolution, and You

“Why Advocates Need to Rethink Manufactured Home Quality,” Harvard, GSE, Genz, “High Satisfaction”

“Challenges to Obtaining Manufactured Home Financing,” Urban Institute Report Fact Check, Analysis

YIMBY vs. NIMBY, Obama Admin Concept Could Unlock $1.95 Trillion Annually, HUD & MH Impact


Greener, Stylish Manufactured Homes – Hidden Facts in the Washington Post Manufactured Housing Narrative

Achieving the American Dream, with Quality, Appealing, Affordable Home Ownership

“The Solution to the Affordable Housing Crisis is Hiding in Plain Sight”

Weather Expert’s Surprising, Bombshell Statement on Tornado Deaths and Affordable Manufactured Homes

Researchers Shake Up American Dream? Rent vs. Buy, Ken Johnson, Florida Atlantic University, Exclusive to ManufacturedHomeLivingNews

Urban Institute Ask for Correction in Analysis of their Manufactured Housing Research, “Follow the Facts,” “Follow the Money”

“Death by Government,” Fascism, Communism, Socialism, ‘Big Brother,’ per Williams, Rummel and Owens


Publisher Rebuked! Doubting Doctor, Skeptic Stunned!


Your New Year’s Resolution

December 31st, 2012 No comments

One of the tremendous honors and privileges of editing and publishing is being exposed to the wisdom of top professionals from coast to coast. As I was reading the January articles (in alphabetical order) by:

  • Larry Arnn, PhD
  • Keith Bennett
  • Tim Connor
  • Nadeen Green, JD
  • Chrissy Jackson
  • Kurt Kelly, JD
  • Charles Marshall
  • DJ Pendleton, JD
  • Scott Stroud – joining us in this issue
  • Ron Thomas, Sr.
  • Zig Ziglar

I was struck time and again by how applying the concepts these professionals suggest would take any company or organization towards better service, fewer head aches, higher job satisfaction and more profits.

Thinking about the many dozens of others who have graced us with their expertise during the course of the years since we launched MHProNews, it is both humbling and exhilarating.

Let me challenge anyone in our industry to read the thoughts of these and our other featured writers and not walk away with one or more useable gems from EVERY article.

Then as part of your 2013 New Year's Resolution, let me suggest that one of the most profitable and beneficial resolutions you could make is for you – and your team/associates – to read every Featured Article every month. The amount of professional development, inspiration and profit building potential is nothing short of amazing.

Make notes about your key takeaways from those articles.

Then, go back and review those takeaways to see how you are doing at implementing them. About 15-20 minutes a day could revolutionize your career, your team, your location or your organization.

Borrowing” Freely

There are some phrases or tag lines which are so good, it is a pleasure to use them. One of my favorite two word phrases is ROC USA's “Better Together.” Wow, what a powerful concept, packed into those two words!

Another favorite of mine is the Christopher's motto:

It is better to light one candle than to curse the darkness.”

Our industry is 'better together' here where news, tips and professional views you can use meet. We are all better off doing even a single little thing – lighting that single candle – than to curse the darkness and do nothing.

Set the example for others. Read daily. Get more involved in business-building industry events.

Then encourage others to do the same, because you have set the example. For those handful of skeptics out there who may think this suggestion is about 'boosting our site,' well think again. Because we already have 800,000 to 900,000 page views monthly – far more than needed – to be 'number one' in our industry's trade media.

So this suggestion for a resolution is boosting YOU as an industry professional and making YOUR operation BETTER. Those who do this WILL reap the rewards.

Speaking of Better Together. We will be at Louisville and Tunica for their shows. Make sure that BOTH are on your calendar and that of key people in your circle of influence. Hope to see you there soon!

As a reminder, Zig was kind enough to share years of articles with us in advance, so you will continue to see him published here, even though he has now gone on to his eternal rest.

Sew the seeds of good reading, apply what you can and then reap a rich harvest in 2013 and beyond!

Let me invite you to check out BuilderRadio's podcast with me on the topic of the Sleeping Giant and more.

Without further ado, let's jump into this month's featured articles. Happy New Year 2013!


Featured Articles and Reports for Vol. 4, No. 4, 2013

Alphabetically by Category



 Renting to Mary Jane Medical Marijuana, Fair Housing and MHCs

by Nadeen Green, JD


On of the most difficult things for any writer/blogger is coming up with something to write about that is truly relevant for readers to read. I was struggling to come up with an idea, but then my muse did her thing (and this time my muse is DJ Ryan with the law firm of Kimball, Tirey & St. John, LLC).

Read more…


• Solutions to Fair Housing Factoids!

by Nadeen Green, JD

To refresh your memory, in the December issue of MHProNews, you may have read the article Fair Housing Factoids. It had a puzzle for your to solve and we promised the solution to the puzzle this month! If you haven't already worked the puzzle, before clicking through to the answer, take a look at the Fair Housing Factoids article linked here.

Read more…


• Promoting your Community: Step 1

by Chrissy Jackson


“Compare apples to apples and oranges to oranges . . .” And the difference is . . .

Let’s first look at what Webster has to say about the meaning of “marketing” – (1) the act or process of buying and selling in a market; and (2) the commercial functions involved in transferring goods from producer to consumer.

Read more…


 Loss Control: a $1 get you $10 Investment

by Kurt Kelley, JD

If you haven’t started a loss control program for your business, the New Year is a good time to do it. Statistics show that $1 spent on loss control saves $10.

The following video is a humorous look at one of many forms of loss control, as it applies to a manufactured home community.

Read more…




 Fueling MH Financing in 2013 and beyond

by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

Is there a short, common-sense step that every MH lender, retailer and community operator could take to fuel financing and sales in 2013? The correct three-letter answer is "Yes."

Read more…


• Access More Third Party MH Financing in 2013


by L. A. “Tony” Kovach

Many who will read this column are doing 'captive' finance, 'buy here, pay here,' rent-to-own or other “in house” finance programs. Those who do it well, good for you. Yet virtually everyone who retails manufactured homes – in land lease communities, in developments or on privately owned sites – wants to access more Dodd-Frank/CFPB compliant MH Financing in 2013.

Read more…



• Time to Give Up or Time to Fight On?

 Interview with Dr. Larry P. Arnn

The following is adapted from an interview of Dr. Larry P Arnn by Hugh Hewitt for the Hugh Hewitt Radio Show, conducted on the day after the election, November 7, 2012.

Hugh Hewitt: My guest is Larry Arnn, the president of Hillsdale College.

Read more…


• Beat the Heat and Boost Your Bottom Line!

by Keith Bennett

Nestled between the cold of winter and the heat of summer is the biggest event of the manufactured housing year, the 2013 Tunica Show! While well over 2,000 professionals attended the Tunica Show in 2012, we expect even more in 2013 for a variety of reasons that all have to do with one thing: boosting your bottom line.

Read more…


• The Incredible Value of Bridging the Gap

by L. A. 'Tony' Kovach

A magazine called the Magnificat, inspired the following paraphrase. Bridge building may be costly. But building a bridge frees those trapped on both sides of the river or gap.

Some years back, I ran across a study done on the millions of dollars saved daily because of the investment in a certain bridge.

Read more…


• PACs: Who has 'em and Why do they Matter so Much?

by DJ Pendleton, JD


NSWER: Everyone, and because losing isn’t an option and everyone can't be a winner. Money in politics. The phrases, quotes and analogies run rampant when discussing money in politics. The association of the two is fundamentally and inextricably intertwined with one another. The reason is simple: it costs a lot of money to run for elected office.


Read more…


• Housing's Sleeping Giant

by Scott Stroud

30 years ago economists referred to China as the ‘sleeping giant’ because of the power the Chinese population would wield if it opened its doors to the commercial world. Well, today, China is no longer asleep – the country is a dominant force in the world market.

Read more…


• United We Stand!

by Ron Thomas, Sr.

ron thomas sr 50x53

Industry unity is so important these days. So it is gratifying to see how the manufacturers, exhibitors and speakers are going all out to make the 2013 Louisville Show a business and industry building experience for you and hundreds of other owners, executives and professionals! We are pleased to announce that we are running nicely ahead of the successful 2012 show in every possible measure!

Read more…





Leadership’s 7 Deadly Sins Or, Why Leaders Fail

by Tim Connor, CSP

During my 30+ year career as a global speaker and trainer, I have worked with hundreds of leaders in a variety of industries around the world. I have also read every book written on the topic of leadership. By combining my practical experience with the insights of others over the years I have come to the conclusion that there are seven major reasons why leaders fail regardless of their roles, positions, industry or experience.

Read more…


The Fifteen Keys to Growing Your Business in an Uncertain Economy

by Tim Connor, CSP

Far too many businesses have unnecessarily failed during the past few years and many more will follow in their footsteps. Will your business be one of them? It doesn’t matter if you are a start-up or have been in business for over thirty years. It doesn’t matter if you have sales under one million or over five hundred million.

Read more…





• ZigOn Breakfast with Fred

by Zig Ziglar

It has been said that many people think communication is taking turns talking, but that leaves out an important ingredient–the heart. A high jumper broke a world's record. Somebody asked him how he did it and he responded, "I threw my heart over the bar and the rest of me followed."

Read more…



 Cooked in a Squat

by L. A. 'Tony' Kovach

One of my favorite Zig Ziglarisms is his expression, "cooked in a squat." Too many professionals limit themselves – get cooked in a squat – by failing to believe they can do and accomplish more. Henry James put a similar notion differently, "It is time we started to live the life we imagined."

Read more…


I Am A Customer

by Charles Marshall

Allow me to introduce myself. I am a customer. I am the person that makes the economic engine turn. I am the reason you take home a paycheck. I am the reason you are able to feed your family, pay your mortgage, go on vacation, buy a car, and contribute to your church or synagogue.

Read more…

It’s not the Product; It’s the Experience.

by Scott Stroud

It’s not that I’m pessimistic, but I rarely expect an exceptional experience as a customer.

I travel a fair amount, mostly in the service of clients who hire me to speak at their company or group meetings or to consult on their sales or marketing processes.

Read more…

Elements for Manufactured Home Industry Breakthrough

May 11th, 2012 No comments

I was speaking with a very successful manufactured home community owner and MH Retailer. We spent about an hour discussing a plan to advance home sales and profits. Near the end of the conversation, the owner said, “Tony, this means a change in the way that we do business.” I agreed, but asked, do you see how this would increase sales and profits? Without hesitation came the answer, “Absolutely.”

On to the next step.

The way the Louisville Manufactured Home Show has always been promoted changed two years ago. By keeping what they had done in the past, but feathering in some new concepts and internet marketing efforts, the show is not only back, but growing in attendance and in the number of exhibitors. Changing the way business was always done was necessary, and hats off to those at MMHF and Show Ways who had the wisdom and courage to try something new. It has paid off for all involved with the Louisville Show.

Change can be forced upon us – as in the case of government regulations forcing changes – or change can simply be embraced when an opportunity to do things in new and better ways presents itself. It is a simple decision to accept, reject or consider change. The battle (if there is one) starts in the mind, and the attitude towards change.

We could boil down the following realities about change.

  • Change always has and always will happen. How it comes may vary, but change is a constant.
  • How we deal with change can determine if we are surviving, thriving or sinking.

We have an amazing product in manufactured homes! I know, I know, some people love MODs, others love pre-fab (panelized, etc.) homes. I see the need and use for all of factory home building. But manufactured housing outsells modulars for a reason. The reasons that panelized homes outsell manufactured homes has more to do with the perception and regulatory issues than the home products themselves.

Factors such as a

  • down economy,
  • lower earnings,
  • growing population,
  • less skilled labor to do conventional home construction

and more are reasons why manufactured homes COULD be the next big wave in housing. This is not to marginalize other forms of factory building, certainly they can and should benefit from the above factors too.

What are the elements keeping us from advancing farther and faster?

  • Perception issues from the public, the media and public officials (each tends to feed the others);
  • Regulatory issues, such as zoning, and issues revolving around financing (SAFE, Dodd-Frank, etc.);
  • Communications issues – too many never consider us, and they are often the 'better credit customers.'

These and other factors slow individual businesses in our Industry. Industries are made up of companies, so when companies within an industry get slowed – or advanced – then the same happens in that Industry.

What are the Solutions?

What would happen if we were swamped with dozens of more customers every day at many locations?

As nice as this 'what if' may sound, I'd say that many or most locations would not be prepared today. I'm positive minded, but also realistic, so let me explain.

A story was told to me by more than one savvy state executive director. The tale – a true one – goes like this. Art Linkletter was hired to do an image and marketing campaign for the retailers of a given state. The program turned out large numbers of customers, thousands whom never came to see manufactured homes before! Some of these customers drove up in their Lincolns or Cadillacs. They walked up to a 'double wide,' they walked up a rickety set of worn out wooden steps. They entered a home that the marriage line was not trimmed out. The carpeting was pulled back at the marriage line; it was not seamed. Since 90% of the public can't visualize what the home would look like finished, these 'ideal' prospects were lost. They prospect who could buy what they wanted to buy left as fast as they could. Many never returned to a manufactured home retail center again.

What that tale should teach us is the following. We could talk about a three step process:

1) Prepare the Select Professionals.

  • We need to prepare a core group of businesses for the potential new wave of manufactured home prospects and clientele.
  • Locations need to have curb appeal and homes need to be ready to show.
  • That new wave needs to be met by professionals who have appropriate training. The sales pros need to know how to successfully engage good customers.
  • All this and more is a matter of preparation, training and motivation.

2) True Alignment with our Customer Base.

We also need to reach out and engage the current manufactured home owner. We need to be aligned with their interests. In the RV business world, successful retailers know that you don't over promise, you don't under deliver, that you want a satisfied customer. They know that the happy customer will tell others, and they also know that the unhappy ones tell even more people. It pays to be honest, it pays to set the right expectations, it pays to get and keep our home buyers happy.

While surveys show that perhaps 76% of manufactured home owners are happy and satisfied, etc. that means that 24% could be happier and more satisfied. We need satisfaction in the 90 percent plus levels to be successful. There are some people you can never satisfy, but most can be. We need to make that the new reality.

So we have work to do.

For these and other reasons, we've launched an online publication focused on the MH Home Owner, called Please check it out and pass the word, especially to your MH owners and residents. The site will remind owners why they have a good value proposition. Over time, using this home owner focused website will pay off for all involved.

3) By getting more Professionals and Home Owners on the same page, we can prepare the way for that brighter future for manufactured housing.

The way to achieve that next step is with a proper image, marketing and sales campaign. These three steps can take place sequentially but also they could be done concurrently. This doesn't require generations, it requires the will and the effort.

Individual businesses could do this 3 step process internally I short order. I know first hand, because I've worked on projects that prove it. But if you think about it, you know yourself that this is true and works because you can see how companies like Car Max have changed for their business the negative perceptions that went into the automotive car buying experience. Car Max has been amazingly successful, but doing internally what they need to do to to align their interests with those of their customers.

So you don't have to have every business, every state, or every professional to buy into a new business model. You can start with one at a time.

Positive Industry Change will come. Will you be leading, following, retreating or someone that was on the center line as the traffic went speeding by each way? ##


Post by
L. A. 'Tony' Kovach or
Innovation – Information – Inspiration for Industry Professionals

Office – 815-270-0500 or


Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right. – Henry Ford